(MARKET WATCH) — Americans looking for investment advice from financial firms with clean regulatory records may have their work cut out for them.
A new study from the New York-based Diligence Review Corp. says that only 10% of the nearly $50 trillion in managed assets is in the hands of companies adhering to the highest standards.
That leaves roughly $44 trillion with firms the research company sees as potentially problematic because of past run-ins with regulators or possible conflicts of interest built into their business models.
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Even more alarming, says Diligence: The lion’s share of assets—$23 trillion—is invested with firms that have what Diligence dubs advisory red flags, meaning issues that could indicate the company “has a systemic culture of breaking the law” or has “operational weaknesses that allowed a regulatory violation to occur.”